How to Overcome Fear and Anxiety


So many of us aren’t living our dreams because we are living our fears.

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Our fears become the dominant emotion in our lives.

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Why?

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Because fear is a far more aggressive emotion.

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More aggressive than aspiration.

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More aggressive than hope.

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You say to yourself, “So I have this goal this aspiration, this hope, this dream, etc but I have this crippling fear.”

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"I want to ask for that promotion at work but I'm afraid they will say no."

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"I want to start a business, but I'm scared it it won't take off and I will have no income."

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I want to put myself out there and start dating again, but I'm afraid I'll get rejected and my heart with get broken."

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"I've never been able to lose this weight before, so I'm scared to try again and fail."

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And guess what...

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You’re going to listen to the fear.

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Over your dreams, hopes, aspirations, and goals.

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So we have to be aware of it.

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There is no illusion greater than fear.

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Worrying is like paying interest a debt you might not even owe.

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Fear distorts.

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Fear paralyzes.

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Fear is contagious.

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We saw that throughout the year of 2020-2021.

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We have to work to move past fear one step at a time.

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Learning how to conquer your fears begins with finding your center. Here are some helpful ways to overcome fear and anxiety so you can begin actually LIVING the life God designed for you:


1. IDENTIFY YOUR FEARS

Learning how to overcome fear is much like any problem-solving challenge in that you must identify the challenge in order to overcome it.

What is it you’re afraid of?

Sit quietly for a few minutes and observe your thoughts, feelings and bodily sensations. Write down what comes up, and be as specific as you can.

Consider embracing a daily meditation practice to gain greater clarity on what drives you. As you find your center, you’ll feel empowered to confront your fears.



2. RECOGNIZE THAT FEAR CAN WORK TO YOUR ADVANTAGE

Our emotions exist to tell us things. When you feel fear, your soul is trying to tell you something – so listen.

If you feel overcome by stress or distracted by a subtle-but-persistent anxiety, it’s likely a subconscious fear that needs your attention. Rather than avoiding it, overcoming fear requires leaning into your anxiety.

View the fear as a piece of information instead of a threat to your survival.

When you use anxiety to your advantage, it can’t ruin your life.

In overcoming fear, it becomes your ally – a critical source of guidance to reach your full potential.


3. SIT WITH YOUR FEAR

There are times for action and times for reflection. Acting too quickly to overcome your fear can lead to behaviors that do more harm than good, like reaching for a drink, indulging in comfort food or even repressing the feeling entirely.

Next time you feel fearful, try something new:

Do nothing.

Sit with your fear for a few minutes.

Think about it.

What is the root cause?

What is the story you tell yourself about why you can’t overcome this fear?

This isn’t to say you shouldn’t take action.

A moment of reflection can have a great effect on overcoming fear in a way that is productive, deliberate and effective.


4. CREATE GOALS THAT ARE “MUSTS”

Oftentimes the process of overcoming fear becomes stymied by uninspiring or elusive goals we set for ourselves. To turn this around, ask yourself:

What does the life you desire and deserve look like?

Is it just a “someday, maybe” plan or do you actively work toward it?

Is it something that is attainable and you’re willing to commit to?

The first step in overcoming fear is identifying whether or not you're creating a compelling goal.

If you accomplish this, will you feel fulfilled?

Conversely, if you don’t accomplish this, will you be lost?

Dig deeper into your goal. What is your ideal outcome?


5. RECOGNIZE THE EXCUSES

Fear makes you put things off.

“I’m really tired. I have other stuff to do. It’s a dumb idea anyway.”

These excuses probably sound familiar, don’t they?

You’ve probably said this out loud and to yourself. Think about it. Is there any truth to these statements, or are you constructing excuses to avoid potential failure?

It’s much easier and less painful to make excuses than it is to put in the long hours and energy it will take to work toward your goal, but excuses and opting out will ultimately leave you feeling unfulfilled.

If you want to find out how to conquer fear, you need to take a different, proactive approach.

Recognize when you are using excuses and figure out how to overcome them.

Too tired? Adjust your schedule so you can get a better night’s sleep.

Not enough time? Assess your priorities and find out where you can make time. And the next time an excuse comes to you, make the decision to not give in to the little voice telling you “No,” because it won’t help you grow in the long run.


6. SURROUND YOURSELF WITH SUCCESS

You become the people you surround yourself with. “Whatever you hold in your mind on a consistent basis is exactly what you will experience in your life.”

If you’ve turned your “shoulds” into “musts” and recognized all your excuses but still aren’t sure how to overcome fear and put your goals into action, it’s time to examine your focus.

People who are truly focused on overcoming fear and achieving their dreams surround themselves with others who have the same mindset. These are people who you not only look up to, but who will push you to achieve your goals. To overcome fear, you need to raise your standards - and allow others to hold you accountable.


7. ADOPT A GROWTH MINDSET

When you’re afraid, you tend to stay in one place. What if you make a mistake? What if you fail? You start to believe you can’t progress at all, that you’re incapable of it – the fear holds you back. One of the most powerful tips to overcome fear and anxiety is to adopt a growth mindset.

It’s not about achieving your goals and being perfect every step of the way. No one is ever perfect all the time, so stop striving for that. It’s about getting comfortable with what you don’t know and continuing anyway – this is the foundation of a growth mindset.

No matter how many mistakes you make or how slow your progress, you’re still way ahead of everyone who isn’t trying.

As you work to overcome fear, you will realize that there will be lots of trials and tribulations along the way. As soon as you’ve accepted that the path to success includes growth and change, you’ll be one step closer to attaining your goals.


8. FIND VALUABLE INSIGHT IN PAIN

No one likes pain. Most of us go to great lengths to avoid it. But pain is a profound teacher. If you accept that your life and your efforts to achieve your goals will be painful at times, painful experiences become opportunities for growth. When you let go of pain as a threat to your survival, it loses its power and becomes another tool for overcoming fear. Everyone experiences hardships in life. It doesn’t matter whether your setbacks are personal or professional – what matters are the lessons you take from those experiences and how you apply them to your future. Instead of letting pain and fear dictate your decisions, actively choose to learn from those painful moments to be in control of your own life.


9. ACCEPT THAT YOU'LL FAIL

What’s the number one fear people have when it comes to accomplishing their goals? That they will fail.

But like pain, failure can teach us. In fact, failure is often a better teacher than success. If you accept from the onset that failure is an inevitable part of success, you’ll be less afraid of it.

Failure can provide you with valuable learning experiences that will positively impact your future strategies.

Everyone fails. Successful business owners. World leaders. Prominent chefs. Artists and scientists and doctors.

Our society shies away from talking about failure, and instead celebrates successes; this creates the false impression that to be truly successful you must never fail. But part of overcoming fear is recognizing that everyone on the planet – including those you know and admire – has encountered failure on their path to greatness. The quicker you realize your fear of failure is preventing you from making the decision to accomplish your dreams, the sooner you’ll be able to accept the possibility of failing and move on.





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